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    • Scott Adams

      Frequently Asked Questions About Celiac Disease   04/24/2018

      This Celiac.com FAQ on celiac disease will guide you to all of the basic information you will need to know about the disease, its diagnosis, testing methods, a gluten-free diet, etc.   Subscribe to Celiac.com's FREE weekly eNewsletter   What is Celiac Disease and the Gluten-Free Diet? What are the major symptoms of celiac disease? Celiac Disease Symptoms What testing is available for celiac disease?  Celiac Disease Screening Interpretation of Celiac Disease Blood Test Results Can I be tested even though I am eating gluten free? How long must gluten be taken for the serological tests to be meaningful? The Gluten-Free Diet 101 - A Beginner's Guide to Going Gluten-Free Is celiac inherited? Should my children be tested? Ten Facts About Celiac Disease Genetic Testing Is there a link between celiac and other autoimmune diseases? Celiac Disease Research: Associated Diseases and Disorders Is there a list of gluten foods to avoid? Unsafe Gluten-Free Food List (Unsafe Ingredients) Is there a list of gluten free foods? Safe Gluten-Free Food List (Safe Ingredients) Gluten-Free Alcoholic Beverages Distilled Spirits (Grain Alcohols) and Vinegar: Are they Gluten-Free? Where does gluten hide? Additional Things to Beware of to Maintain a 100% Gluten-Free Diet What if my doctor won't listen to me? An Open Letter to Skeptical Health Care Practitioners Gluten-Free recipes: Gluten-Free Recipes
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    Canada Requires All Food Labels to Declare Gluten, Other Allergens


    Jefferson Adams

    Celiac.com 08/31/2012 - Since August 4th, 2012, Canadian Food Allergen Labeling Regulations require all food products containing gluten, or any of ten other major allergens, to clearly state their presence on the label.


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    Photo: Jefferson AdamsThis change marks an important step in consumer safety that will benefit the estimated three million Canadians with celiac disease and gluten sensitivity, as well as others with sensitivities to major food allergens.

    For people with celiac disease, consuming gluten can cause anemia, nutritional deficiencies, a blistering skin rash, and an increased risk of other autoimmune diseases such as Type 1 diabetes. It can also lead to some cancers of the gut.

    One major problem for people with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity is that, unless clearly stated on the label, it can be difficult to tell whether or not gluten is present in foods they may buy.

    A 2009 Health Canada survey of approximately 7,000 people revealed that 96.1% of individuals read every ingredient on all food products to figure out whether the product contains gluten.

    Nearly eighty percent of those surveyed said that their greatest challenge was with incomplete labeling.

    For people who are sensitive to gluten and/or other major allergens, this new labeling rule will remove much of the guesswork from grocery shopping, and substantially reduce the risk to individuals sensitive or intolerant to gluten or other allergens.

    Those risks include an estimated 14,000 emergency hospital wards each year that are the result of reactions to gluten and other allergens, which carry a projected $5 million in extra health care costs.

    Source:


    Image Caption: Photo: Jefferson Adams
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    This is good news for Canadians. I wonder if the product in the picture is really gluten-free if it contains mixed tocopherols. Do celiacs still need to worry that some of the vitamin E might come from wheat germ even though the product claims it is gluten-free?

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    Good question from Susan. Here in Australia, I've discovered that if it isn't actually an 'ingredient' then it doesn't always get on the label, e.g. flour used to stop food items sticking together during processing or in packaging. Good on you, though, to the Canadian government.

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    The above is not gluten free. The definition of gluten is sadly lacking.

     

    All grains have gluten in them and since it has rice in it, it is not gluten free. Yes, It is a different form of gluten but the body can't tell the difference.

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    Guest TheWendybird

    Posted

    I'm originally from Canada and go back at least once a year to visit family. I'd be very interested to know if their labeling for gluten will include if it's made on the same lines/cross contamination etc.

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    Curious that an article about Canadian food labels shows an American food label with a gluten-free product in it. It should show a Canadian label with allergens in it to demonstrate the headline of this article. We need all the help we can get!

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    Guest Jefferson

    Posted

    The above is not gluten free. The definition of gluten is sadly lacking.

     

    All grains have gluten in them and since it has rice in it, it is not gluten free. Yes, It is a different form of gluten but the body can't tell the difference.

    I am unaware of any study that shows that the bodies of people with celiac disease react the same to rice gluten as to the gluten in wheat, barley or rye? I am also not aware of any study that indicates that rice gluten provokes any adverse reaction in people with celiac disease. Perhaps you could cite your sources for this (mis)information?

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    The above is not gluten free. The definition of gluten is sadly lacking.

     

    All grains have gluten in them and since it has rice in it, it is not gluten free. Yes, It is a different form of gluten but the body can't tell the difference.

    Wrong. Rice doesn't contain glutenin and gliadin which are the proteins that celiacs and gluten intolerant people react to.

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  • Related Articles

    Scott Adams

    Celiac.com 06/02/2002 Prepared by Laura Yick - There are currently two bills in congress regarding food labeling that affect people with celiac disease. Both HR 1356 and HR 4704 were introduced by Representative Nita M. Lowey (D-NY) in the House of Representatives. S 2499 is the same as HR 4704 and was introduced by Senator Edward M. Kennedy (D-MA) in the Senate. It appears that HR 1356 is somewhat conflicting with HR 4704 and is a weaker version with less detail. HR 4704/S 2499 bill looks to be more beneficial for us (we all know the frustrations of having to verify the gluten status of foods, even if they are labeled gluten-free!), as it contains a section that deals with cross-contamination (see p.9 lines 13-25, p.10, and p.11 lines 1-2). HR 4704/S 2499 is under the control of the Secretary of Health and Human Services, however, the enforcement of cross-contamination labeling is not clear. You can compare them for yourself by going to the US Congress websites listed below. Here is a summary of each bill and a listing of the committee and subcommittee members who have control over the fate of the bills:
    House Bill H.R.1356
    Sponsor: Rep Lowey, Nita M.(introduced 4/3/2001)
    Title: To amend the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act to require that foods containing spices, flavoring, or coloring derived from meat, poultry, other animal products (including insects), or known allergens bear labeling stating that fact and their names.
    SUMMARY AS OF: 4/3/2001--Introduced.
    Food Ingredient Right to Know Act
    Amends the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act to provide that a food shall be deemed to be misbranded if it contains any spice, flavoring, or coloring derived from meat, poultry, any other animal product (including insects), or a known food allergen unless its labeling bears a statement with appropriate prominence on the information panel providing that fact and the name of the meat, poultry, other animal product, or known food allergen.
    STATUS:
    4/3/2001: Referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce (see below for list of committee members).
    4/25/2001: Referred to the Subcommittee on Health (see below for list of subcommittee members).
    07/29/2002: The food Allergen Bill S.2499 has been rescheduled for discussion after the August recess.

    House Bill H.R.4704
    Sponsor: Rep Lowey, Nita M.(introduced 5/9/2002)
    Title: To amend the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act to establish labeling requirements regarding allergenic substances in food, and for other purposes.
    STATUS: (color indicates Senate actions)
    5/9/2002: Referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce.
    5/17/2002: Referred to the Subcommittee on Health.
    Senate Bill S.2499
    Sponsor: Sen. Kennedy, Edward M.(introduced 5/9/2002)
    Title: A Bill to amend the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act to establish labeling requirements regarding allergenic substances in food, and for other purposes.
    STATUS:
    5/9/2002: Read twice and referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions.
    The current laws of the United States can be found at:
    http://law2.house.gov/download.htm
    Note that HR 4704 and S 2499 have exactly the same wording except for the sponsors. Bills in committees or subcommittees have three fates: (1) Tabled (i.e., they are essentially postponed, possibly forever), (2) Releasing it for a full House or Senate vote with a recommendation to pass it, (3) Revised and then released as in (2). Bills in committees also may be referred to subcommittees within the committee. It is possible that the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions may refer S 2499 to the Subcommittee on Public Health. The bill needs to pass with a simple majority (218 of 435 in the House, 26 of 50 in the Senate). The bill then goes to the other congressional body where the process begins again. Once both the House and Senate pass the bill, any differences between the House version and Senate version must be worked out by a conference committee of both House and Senate members. Then the bill must finally be approved by both the House and Senate. Because HR 4704 and S 2499 are concurrent, the entire process may be faster than if only one body of Congress were working on it. Finally, the President needs to approve it; otherwise, the bill goes back to the House and Senate and must pass by a 2/3 majority in both.
    If your representative or senator is listed below on a committee and/or subcommittee that is reviewing a bill, it is important that you request them to speed the committee recommendation of the bill to the full House or Senate vote and to ensure that it is not weakened. If your representative or senator is not on one of the committees or subcommittees, you could still urge them to support the speedy passage of the bills. Speedy passage is essential because there is a clause that gives a four year grace period.
    Politically, it may be especially effective for you to write your congress people regarding these bills if they are up for re-election, or if they are seeking higher office in an upcoming election, but any e-mail to your representatives will be helpful. To see who your representative is:
    http://www.house.gov/house/MemberWWW.html
    To write your representative:
    http://www.house.gov/writerep/
    To see who your senators are:
    http://www.senate.gov/senators/senator_by_state.cfm
    To write your senators:
    http://www.senate.gov/contacting/index.cfm

    Tips from the GIG on writing your letters or e-mails:
    Address the Congressman as Honorable. Keep the letter to one page. Stay on the message - The passage of Representative Lowey and Senator Kennedy Bill, the Food Allergen Consumer Protection Act is important to the health and safety of thousands of persons suffering from allergies and intolerances. Use the language used in the Bill ...gluten and allergens, not celiac disease. Tell them what you want -- for them to support passage of this Bill. Sharing a bad experience and how passage of this bill would have made a difference can be helpful...but keep it brief. Remind them you follow their votes and that you appreciate their support. Sign your name, provide your full address, and phone number. The names of Subcommittee and Committee Members who control the fate of these bills. We can make a difference with our letters and e-mail to them:
    The current House Committee on Energy and Commerce:
    W. J. Billy Tauzin, Chairman
    Michael Bilirakis, Florida
    Joe Barton, Texas
    Fred Upton, Michigan
    Cliff Stearns, Florida
    Paul E. Gillmor, Ohio
    James C. Greenwood, Pennsylvania
    Christopher Cox, California
    Nathan Deal, Georgia
    Richard Burr, North Carolina, Vice Chairman
    Ed Whitfield, Kentucky
    Greg Ganske, Iowa
    Charlie Norwood, Georgia
    Barbara Cubin, Wyoming
    John Shimkus, Illinois
    Heather Wilson, New Mexico
    John B. Shadegg, Arizona
    Charles Chip Pickering, Mississippi
    Vito Fossella, New York
    Roy Blunt, Missouri
    Thomas Davis, Virginia
    Ed Bryant, Tennessee
    Robert Ehrlich, Maryland
    Steve Buyer, Indiana
    George Radanovich, California
    Charles F. Bass, New Hampshire
    Joseph Pitts, Pennsylvania
    Mary Bono, California
    Greg Walden, Oregon
    Lee Terry, Nebraska
    Ernie Fletcher, Kentucky
    John D. Dingell, Michigan, Ranking Member
    Henry A. Waxman, California
    Edward J. Markey, Massachusetts
    Ralph M. Hall, Texas
    Rick Boucher, Virginia
    Edolphus Towns, New York
    Frank Pallone Jr., New Jersey
    Sherrod Brown, Ohio
    Bart Gordon, Tennessee
    Peter Deutsch, Florida
    Bobby L. Rush, Illinois
    Anna G. Eshoo, California
    Bart Stupak, Michigan
    Eliot L. Engel, New York
    Tom Sawyer, Ohio
    Albert R. Wynn, Maryland
    Gene Green, Texas
    Karen McCarthy, Missouri
    Ted Strickland, Ohio
    Diana DeGette, Colorado
    Tom Barrett, Wisconsin
    Bill Luther, Minnesota
    Lois Capps, California
    Mike Doyle, Pennsylvania
    Chris John, Louisiana
    Jane Harman, California
    House Committee on Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health:
    Michael Bilirakis, Florida, Chairman
    Joe Barton, Texas
    Fred Upton, Michigan
    James C. Greenwood, Pennsylvania
    Nathan Deal, Georgia
    Richard Burr, North Carolina
    Ed Whitfield, Kentucky
    Greg Ganske, Iowa
    Charlie Norwood, Georgia, Vice Chairman
    Barbara Cubin, Wyoming
    Heather Wilson, New Mexico
    John B. Shadegg, Arizona
    Charles W. Chip Pickering, Mississippi
    Ed Bryant, Tennessee
    Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr., Maryland
    Steve Buyer, Indiana
    Joseph R. Pitts, Pennsylvania
    W.J. Billy Tauzin, Louisiana
    Sherrod Brown, Ohio, Ranking Member
    Henry A. Waxman, California
    Ted Strickland, Ohio
    Tom Barrett, Wisconsin
    Lois Capps, California
    Ralph M. Hall, Texas
    Edolphus Towns, New York
    Frank Pallone, Jr., New Jersey
    Peter Deutsch, Florida
    Anna G. Eshoo, California
    Bart Stupak, Michigan
    Eliot L. Engel, New York
    Albert R. Wynn, Maryland
    Gene Green, Texas
    John D. Dingell, Michigan
    Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions:
    Edward M. Kennedy, MA, Chairman
    Christopher Dodd, CT
    Tom Harkin, IA
    Barbara Mikulski, MD
    James Jeffords, VT
    Jeff Bingaman, NM
    Paul Wellstone, MN
    Patty Murray, WA
    Jack Reed, RI
    John Edwards, NC
    Hillary Clinton, NY
    Judd Gregg, NH, Ranking Member
    Bill Frist, TN
    Mike Enzi, WY
    Tim Hutchinson, AR
    John Warner, VA
    Christopher Bond, MO
    Pat Roberts, KS
    Susan Collins, ME
    Jeff Sessions, AL
    Mike DeWine, OH
    Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Subcommittee on Public Health:
    Edward M. Kennedy, MA, Chairman
    Tom Harkin, IA
    Barbara Mikulski, MD
    James Jeffords, VT
    Jeff Bingaman, NM
    Paul Wellstone, MN
    Jack Reed, RI
    John Edwards, NC
    Hillary Clinton, NY
    Judd Gregg, NH,
    Bill Frist, TN
    Michael Enzi, WY
    Tim Hutchinson, AR
    Christopher Bond, MO
    Pat Roberts, KS
    Susan Collins, ME
    Jeff Sessions, AL

    Scott Adams

    Celiac.com 11/25/2003 - On Friday, November 21, 2003, the Senate HELP Committee took a major step toward improving the nations food labeling laws. The Committee, led by Senator Judd Gregg (R-NH) and Senator Edward Kennedy (D-MA), unanimously passed legislation requiring the top 8 allergens -- peanuts, tree nuts, eggs, milk, soybeans, shellfish, fish, and wheat -- to be listed on food labels by their common or usual name, or by source of the ingredient.
    The measure also requires the Secretary of HHS to develop rules for the use of the term gluten-free on food labels.
    The "Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act of 2003" is now Title II of S. 741.
    Todays action by the HELP Committee demonstrates that our unified efforts are making a difference. The SINGLE voice of the celiac community was heard, and taken seriously.
    All of us deserve credit for getting this far. Next up, the Senate Floor.
    Thanks for your help,
    Andrea Levario and Allison Herwitt
    Co-Chairs, Legislative Project
    American Celiac Task Force
    http://www.celiaccenter.org/taskforce.asp
    E-mail: actf@fogworks.net

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 04/26/2012 - A recent statement by the FDA announces that the agency is gathering data to respond to calls for an "alternative approach" to determining a specific gluten threshold level other than the proposed level of under 20 parts per million gluten as one of the criteria to define the term “gluten-free.”
    The statement directly acknowledges that people with celiac disease must avoid gluten for life in order to prevent harmful health effects.
    The statement also notes that, in 2011, the Agency, through its Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN) conducted the following actions involving accurate gluten labeling of food products: 
    It finished a safety assessment of gluten exposure in individuals with celiac disease, and that it had gotten that assessment peer-reviewed.
    This was done to gather more data regarding possible alternative approaches to establishing a specific gluten threshold level as one of the criteria to define “gluten-free.”  
    These would be alternative approaches that differ from the "analytical methods-based approach" used by the FDA in its proposed rule for "gluten-free" products. That proposal established product ingredients under 20 parts per million gluten as one of the criteria for defining the term “gluten-free.”
    The FDA statement also noted that CFSAN had published a Federal Register notice in August 2011, reopening the comment period on the Agency’s proposed rule on “gluten-free” food labeling. 
    The notice announces the publication of the FDA's safety assessment on gluten exposure in people with celiac disease, and asks for public comment on the safety assessment, and on any other issues that might affect the definition of the term “gluten-free” in the Agency's final rule. 
    Lastly, the statement announces that the FDA will review and consider those public comments before issuing its final rule defining “gluten-free” for labeling food products, including dietary supplements. The FDA intends to complete the entire process and issue the rule by the end of fiscal year 2012.
    Source:

    FDA

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 02/06/2015 - Australia is home to some of the most stringent gluten-free product standards in the world. Under current standards, all “gluten free" products sold in Australia must contain about three parts or fewer per million.
    The food industry would like the standard set at 20 parts per million, which would bring Australia into line with the United States, and the EU.
    Moreover, Coeliac Australia, a major celiac advocacy group, has suggested that Australia’s strict standards are becoming unworkable, as improved tests permit detection of smaller and smaller amounts of the gluten protein. The group has signaled an openness to the industry plan to lower the standards to 20ppm gluten content.
    Such a move would allow a much wider range of products to be sold in Australia as “gluten-free, ” but would potentially impact hundreds of thousands of Australians who suffer from celiac disease and gluten-sensitivity, many of whom who fear it will save money for manufacturers while triggering severe illnesses in their population.
    The push to change the definition of "gluten free” is being driven by the food and grocery council, which includes major grocery chain Coles.
    Coles happens to be one of Coeliac Australia’s biggest sponsors.
    However, in the face of vociferous opposition to such changes, Coeliac Australia has backtracked from its initial support, and has announced that it will now review its position.
    What do you think? Is Australia’s gluten-free standard too tough? Will it be better to change the standard to match that of the U.S. and the E.U.? Or would it be better to change American and European standards to match Australia. Share your thoughts below.
    Read more at SMH.com.

  • Recent Articles

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 05/25/2018 - People with celiac disease need to follow a lifelong gluten-free diet. However, once their guts have healed, they can still be sensitive to gluten. Sometimes even more sensitive than they were before they went gluten-free. Accidental ingestion of gluten can trigger symptoms in celiac patients, such as pain in the gut and diarrhea, and can also cause intestinal damage. 
    A new drug being developed by a company called Amgen eases the effects of people with celiac disease on a gluten-free diet. Researchers working on the drug have announced that their proof-of-concept study shows AMG 714, an anti-IL-15 monoclonal antibody, potentially protects celiac patients from inadvertent gluten exposure by blocking interleukin 15, an important mediator of celiac disease, and leads to fewer symptoms following gluten exposure.
    The drug is intended for people with celiac disease who are following a gluten-free diet, and is designed to protect against modest gluten contamination, not to permit consumption of large amounts of gluten, like bread or pasta.
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    Findings of the team’s first phase 2 study of a biologic immune modulator in celiac disease will be presented at the upcoming Digestive Disease Week 2018. 
    Read more at ScienceDaily.com

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 05/24/2018 - England is facing some hard questions about gluten-free food prescriptions for people with celiac disease. Under England’s National Health Plan, people with celiac disease are eligible for gluten-free foods as part of their medical treatment. 
    The latest research shows that prescription practice for gluten-free foods varies widely, and often seems independent of medical factors. This news has put those prescribing practices under scrutiny.
    "Gluten free prescribing is clearly in a state of flux at the moment, with an apparent rapid reduction in prescribing nationally," say the researchers. Their data analysis revealed that after a steady increase in prescriptions between 1998 and 2010, the prescription rate for gluten free foods has both fallen, and become more variable, in recent years. Not only is there tremendous variation in gluten free prescribing, say the researchers, “this variation appears to exist largely without good reason…”
    Worse still, the research showed that those living in the most deprived areas of the country are the least likely to be prescribed gluten-free products, possibly due to a lower rate of celiac diagnosis in disadvantaged groups, say the researchers.
    But following a public consultation, the government decided earlier this year to restrict the range of gluten free products rather than banning them outright. As research data pile up and gluten-free food becomes cheaper and more ubiquitous, look for more changes to England’s gluten-free prescription program to follow. 
    Read more about this research in the online journal BMJ Open.

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 05/23/2018 - Yes, we at Celiac.com realize that rye bread is not gluten-free, and is not suitable for consumption by people with celiac disease!  That is also true of rye bread that is low in FODMAPs.
    FODMAPs are Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides and Polyols. FODMAPS are molecules found in food, and can be poorly absorbed by some people. Poor FODMAP absorption can cause celiac-like symptoms in some people. FODMAPs have recently emerged as possible culprits in both celiac disease and in irritable bowel syndrome.
    In an effort to determine what, if any, irritable bowel symptoms may triggered by FODMAPs, a team of researchers recently set out to compare the effects of regular vs low-FODMAP rye bread on irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) symptoms and to study gastrointestinal conditions with SmartPill.
    A team of researchers compared low-FODMAP rye bread with regular rye bread in patients irritable bowel syndrome, to see if rye bread low FODMAPs would reduce hydrogen excretion, lower intraluminal pressure, raise colonic pH, improve transit times, and reduce IBS symptoms compared to regular rye bread. The research team included Laura Pirkola, Reijo Laatikainen, Jussi Loponen, Sanna-Maria Hongisto, Markku Hillilä, Anu Nuora, Baoru Yang, Kaisa M Linderborg, and Riitta Freese.
    They are variously affiliated with the Clinic of Gastroenterology; the Division of Nutrition, Department of Food and Environmental Sciences; the Medical Faculty, Pharmacology, Medical Nutrition Physiology, University of Helsinki in Helsinki, Finland; the University of Helsinki and Helsinki University, Hospital Jorvi in Espoo, Finland; with the Food Chemistry and Food Development, Department of Biochemistry, University of Turku inTurku, Finland; and with the Fazer Group/ Fazer Bakeries Ltd in Vantaa, Finland.
    The team wanted to see if rye bread low in FODMAPs would cause reduced hydrogen excretion, lower intraluminal pressure, higher colonic pH, improved transit times, and fewer IBS symptoms than regular rye bread. 
    To do so, they conducted a randomized, double-blind, controlled cross-over meal study. For that study, seven female IBS patients ate study breads at three consecutive meals during one day. The diet was similar for both study periods except for the FODMAP content of the bread consumed during the study day.
    The team used SmartPill, an indigestible motility capsule, to measure intraluminal pH, transit time, and pressure. Their data showed that low-FODMAP rye bread reduced colonic fermentation compared with regular rye bread. They found no differences in pH, pressure, or transit times between the breads. They also found no difference between the two in terms of conditions in the gastrointestinal tract.
    They did note that the gastric residence of SmartPill was slower than expected. SmartPill left the stomach in less than 5 h only once in 14 measurements, and therefore did not follow on par with the rye bread bolus.
    There's been a great deal of interest in FODMAPs and their potential connection to celiac disease and gluten-intolerance. Stay tuned for more information on the role of FODMAPs in celiac disease and/or irritable bowel syndrome.
    Source:
    World J Gastroenterol. 2018 Mar 21; 24(11): 1259–1268.doi:  10.3748/wjg.v24.i11.1259

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 05/22/2018 - Proteins are the building blocks of life. If scientists can figure out how to create and grow new proteins, they can create new treatments and cures to a multitude of medical, biological and even environmental conditions.
    For a couple of decades now, scientists have been searching for a biological Rosetta stone that would allow them to engineer proteins with precision, but the problem has remained dauntingly complex.  Researchers had a pretty good understanding of the very simple way that the linear chemical code carried by strands of DNA translates into strings of amino acids in proteins. 
    But, one of the main problems in protein engineering has to do with the way proteins fold into their various three-dimensional structures. Until recently, no one has been able to decipher the rules that will predict how proteins fold into those three-dimensional structures.  So even if researchers were somehow able to design a protein with the right shape for a given job, they wouldn’t know how to go about making it from protein’s building blocks, the amino acids.
    But now, scientists like William DeGrado, a chemist at the University of California, San Francisco, and David Baker, director for the Institute for Protein Design at the University of Washington, say that designing proteins will become at least as important as manipulating DNA has been in the past couple of decades.
    After making slow, but incremental progress over the years, scientists have improved their ability to decipher the complex language of protein shapes. Among other things, they’ve gained a better understanding of how then the laws of physics cause the proteins to snap into folded origami-like structures based on the ways amino acids are attracted or repelled by others many places down the chain.
    It is this new ability to decipher the complex language of protein shapes that has fueled their progress. UCSF’s DeGrado is using these new breakthroughs to search for new medicines that will be more stable, both on the shelf and in the body. He is also looking for new ways to treat Alzheimer’s disease and similar neurological conditions, which result when brain proteins fold incorrectly and create toxic deposits.
    Meanwhile, Baker’s is working on a single vaccine that would protect against all strains of the influenza virus, along with a method for breaking down the gluten proteins in wheat, which could help to generate new treatments for people with celiac disease. 
    With new computing power, look for progress on the understanding, design, and construction of brain proteins. As understanding, design and construction improve, look for brain proteins to play a major role in disease research and treatment. This is all great news for people looking to improve our understanding and treatment of celiac disease.
    Source:
    Bloomberg.com

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 05/21/2018 - Just a year ago, Starbucks debuted their Canadian bacon, egg and cheddar cheese gluten-free sandwich. During that year, the company basked in praise from customers with celiac disease and gluten-sensitivity for their commitment to delivering a safe gluten-free alternative to it’s standard breakfast offerings.
    But that commitment came to an ignoble end recently as Starbucks admitted that their gluten-free sandwich was plagued by  “low sales,” and was simply not sustainable from a company perspective. The sandwich may not have sold well, but it was much-loved by those who came to rely on it.
    With the end of that sandwich came the complaints. Customers on social media were anything but quiet, as seen in numerous posts, tweets and comments pointing out the callous and tone-deaf nature of the announcement which took place in the middle of national Celiac Disease Awareness Month. More than a few posts threatened to dump Starbucks altogether.
    A few of the choice tweets include the following:  
    “If I’m going to get coffee and can’t eat anything might as well be DD. #celiac so your eggbites won’t work for me,” tweeted @NotPerryMason. “They’re discontinuing my @Starbucks gluten-free sandwich which is super sad, but will save me money because I won’t have a reason to go to Starbucks and drop $50 a week,” tweeted @nwillard229. Starbucks is not giving up on gluten-free entirely, though. The company will still offer several items for customers who prefer gluten-free foods, including Sous Vide Egg Bites, a Marshmallow Dream Bar and Siggi’s yogurt.
    Stay tuned to learn more about Starbucks gluten-free foods going forward.